I've created a monster

For three years, it seems all we've heard from friends and family is "How's the house coming?" It is infuriating mainly because they all know about this blog, which I created so my ears did not have to suffer those four words any more than necessary. My quest for fame and fortune aside, keeping people updated is the whole point of Thirtyeight20. Sadly, any given stranger is more likely to read the blog than the majority of my family members. (With a couple loyal and duly noted exceptions. Mom and dad. Jen. Airlia.) Truly, the vast majority of my readers are completely anonymous, which is both cool and creepy. Or maybe I know more of you than I'm aware of?

Anyway, I've gotten so tired of talking about the house that I have told more than one loved one so far that we finished the house a few months back, had a big party, and invited everyone we love best. (Sometimes my sense of humor does not play well with others.)

At any rate, this blog started as a commentary about our house and the things that happening to its walls and pipes and paint colors... In my general excitement to write about things of all sorts though, lately I think it's gotten too cluttered, or too watered down by other things. Baby things, mostly, but also all the other things I want to write about but hold back because I don't feel this is the right venue. It just feels... out of hand.

Here's what happened: S and I were talking the other day about how Maryland is our least favorite place we've lived since we got married, and we thought about why, and about how we can change that. Finishing the house was of course the biggest thing on the list of solutions, and separating ourselves from our house was another. Any time we take a Saturday to just relax (which has been often lately) we feel the guilt in the back of our minds... another workday wasted. When we go somewhere, "How's the house coming?" is the second question we hear. (The first, equally annoying, is "Is the baby sleeping through the night yet?") We don't feel that we've ever settled in, despite being closer to family, and made a niche for ourselves. Most of our closer friends live at least 45 minutes away in the city, and since we've both lived city lives for the past 10 years it's been harder than we expected to adjust to small town life and the different "culture" of the suburbs. Feeling so deeply interconnected with this house is really dragging us (mostly me) down. 

Thus, having our house be the focus of the blog has started to feel upside down. I feel kind of guilty when I don't have house updates to post, and that is obviously dumb. Pressuring myself to work on the house, then pressuring myself to write about it with a certain measure of frequency, was just too much pressure that I don't need. This house has become a monster that needs to be put in its place.

So I made a decision. I'm going to start a new blog.

Never fear: Thirtyeight20 will still be here to document our renovation, and I will update it as often as we have renovation news to share. I didn't want to ditch it altogether because it really has been great fun, and I've made lots of great friends through this adventure--and some of you are so kindly invested in this project that I'm not about to shut it down on you! But not everyone is interested in my ramblings on topics other than the renovation, so simply changing the focus of Thirtyeight20 didn't seem to be the right answer.

My new blog, however, will be about whatever I want it to be about. I will link to renovation updates so you don't have to swap back and forth, but there will be that separation I've been craving. Perhaps it's more of a symbolic separation, but that's okay. I need to live my life outside of the house, so to speak, and allow myself the freedom to write about other things. While two blogs may seem like twice the pressure of one, it feels liberating and energizing to me. I feel like I'd painted myself into a corner, and now I'm free to move about.

It may be a few weeks before I'm up and running, but I'll be sure to let you know when the newest chapter begins. Until then, thanks for reading, random strangers! (And the select family members listed above.) Thanks for all your support!


  1. i'll be here and there, of course. i'm with you about annoying renovation questions. we've not even been here for a year yet and family members will ask me questions like "when are you going to get around to painting the outside? hanging curtains? landscaping? hanging pictures?" etc. there are only so many hours in a day and so many dollars in our bank account. and since jon does this type of stuff for his 9-5 (or rather more like a 7-6), i never ever ask him to work on our house on the weekends. don't ever feel guilty for taking time off to enjoy a nice day with johnnie or with friends/family.
    can't wait to see the new blog!

  2. amen to the post and jen's comment
    dear family: i really have no clue about when we'll come around to painting the entrance or fixings leaks or buying a ne toilet sit, one that actually has a lid, so back off, please

  3. Haha! I feel your frustration! I got tired of hearing "what's your url again?" so now my family gets their daily does of me via email each time I post. It's great because the respond back to what they want and leave the rest alone.

  4. EK:

    A couple questions for you:

    #1 How's the house coming?
    #2 Is the baby sleeping through the night yet?

    I understand your feelings. I figured early-on that your attentions would shift from house to baby, how could it not?
    Why shouldn't it? Children are wonderful and a Blessing straight from God.

    I freely confess that I, after reading my morning comics, check 3820 for news. In fact throughout the day I check it, maybe three or four times. I wait with bated breath for fresh pictures of a finished kitchen, or stairs enclosed. But I refrain from pressuring you and "S" for progress reports. Instead I say: Live and enjoy life to it's fullest. The World will wait for you, and so will I.

    Creepy ;o)

  5. Em -- I always read! But I'll read wherever you post!


    ...... ok, that last line should probably have been "The World will wait for you TO POST ABOUT YOUR HOUSE, and so will I".

    Less Creepy

    1. Ha ha. Thanks Mel. All we've done around the house lately is vacuum intermittently and do mounds of laundry. I'll spare you those updates. :-)

  7. Thanks for all the support, friends

  8. I hear you - ever since we moved into our house the first thing friends say is always "How's the house coming along?" And ooooh the guilt of sitting around and relaxing...


Thanks for reading! I love your thoughts, feedback and suggestions. Keep 'em coming!